Folksy Ltd

A Visitor at the door

Forget to mention on Saturday got a knock on the front door, a lovely lady standing there saying she was truing to find a gift shop. I explained that I was online only but could I help. She wanted some wrapping paper for a memory frame project she was making. I could not help but did point her to a local garden centre who do beautiful wrapping paper sheets.

The first time having someone appear on the doorstep in my 16 years of trading.

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That’s a bit worrying.

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I was once asked by a customer if she purchased an item could she collect the item in person, she didn’t live locally.
I said I wasn’t insured for home visitors. Needless to say she didn’t purchase the items. Rather strange though.

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I on on google local with my Folksy shop but thinking of taking off as not sure want this happening again. I am covered for visitors as have done the ‘Open Studios’ before. My google shows online clearly but she did not read this bit

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The majority of my sales are to local customers and they always pick up from my home, I have all my makes in glass cabinets in the dining room and often get people calling to choose an item…both new and return customers, i do have public liability insurance

I’m not sure that would apply if you came to make a claim on your house insurance. There are a lot of insurance companies out there who will adamantly refuse to insure you if you run a business from home and certainly one of the questions asked is do you have customers visiting.
We changed our insurer a few months ago having realised we were potentially not insured and sure enough, having found someone who would insure (but no customer visitors ticked) we phoned our current insurers and they said absolutely not and they stopped our insurance on the spot.

I’m pretty certain I raised a topic on this. I’ll see if I can find it and add the link.

Yes… here it is :slight_smile:

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We used to have are insurance through Lloyds and they covered for visitors. Stopped that years ago and the current ones do not.

Thank you Joy @JOYSofGLASS, my home insurers do know that I work from home, my business insurance is a seperate policy but I think I should check the small print to check if I am covered for visitors.
I’m not sure i would have any customers left if I said they could no longer pop by to pick up, most have returned to me over and over, many i have known forever and at least since starting Bearlescent and are local so they have become friends if they wern’t already so it would be very difficult to say they could no longer call by…if I upset my locals/regulars it wouldnt be worth continuing with it as 95% are from the villages … luckily my business insurance renewal has just come in so I will have a read before I renew…thank you :blush:

i hand sew most of my items I’m not sure it could be regarded as hazardous to my house insurance lol the most I ever use is a sewing machine and I work upstairs…my visitors only stay downstairs the same as a friend visiting would but I can imagine some insurance companies will just find a good excuse to bump the premium up further…if I can no longer have customers collect a bear from me and maybe have a cuppa and chat if they so wish then I will pack it all in as the world has gone crazy…I come from a Health and safety background (previous employment) so I am absolutely satisfied there are no risks to customers coming into my home :joy::smiley::smile: Surely the public liability of 5million is enough insurance…I’m off to read up Joy xx :joy::smiley:

The discussion we had with the insurance companies which wouldn’t insure us were unbelievable and totally illogical. It’s just some underwriters will cover and some won’t.
I was aware that my husband had for several years been ticking the not running a business box and I got a bit worried about it. We are, I’m sure, all aware that the one thing any insurance company will do is take your money very willingly but be equally unwilling to ever give you any of it back. Any teeny weeny excuse will do and certainly if the house had burned down and they had looked in the fire untouched garage they would have very good reason to believe some sort of business was going on so the burned down house would not have been covered.

All now ok and I was quite relieved.

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Thank you Joy, I understand completely what you are saying…i will read all my small print lol but to be honest if it means the premiums go sky high or if friends can no longer pop by to collect then I’ll probably throw the towel in, the work I do is no different than sat cross stitching a picture for myself and friends collecting is no different than a neighbour popping in for a chat but I also realise insurance companies are scavengers so will definately do my homework. I hope with having both household and business insurance everything will be in order, if it’s not enough then sadly I will have to rethink it as business is quiet this year in comparison to previous years so we cant afford another increase in outgoings. I am very grateful for your help and advice though, I obviously thought I had done everything I needed so it is quite worrying. I will let you know when I have checked it out.

Hi Joy @JOYSofGLASS…I have public liability and product liability insurance which is a seperate business insurance to my home insurance, public liability covers visitors to your home if you work from home…pheeeeewwee !! I just had a read up on AXA working from home and I am covered…I thought I was but did panic earlier with the comments about home visits from customers…my insurance address is my home address.
Well to be honest it was good to read through my policy before I renew as well as Ihavn’t bothered the past few years, just send them a cheque, pin up the certificate and file the rest unread lol …sorry for the long replies :smiley::joy::grin::sweat_smile:again thank you, panic over :blush:x

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I think the problem for home insurance isn’t that they’re worried about the safety of your customers, but that you’re inviting strangers into your home so it could be an increased security risk. Although you may consider them friends and trust them, the insurance company are just going to see them as customers, and as they’ll be thinking of the worst case - strangers who could cause damage to your house or be checking it out as a possible place to break into.

Although you’re probably correct that your liability insurance covers anything happening to your customers in your house, your home insurance will still probably want to know if you have customers visiting, because if they don’t cover you for that and something happens to your house, they may use it as an excuse not to pay out. Hopefully if they already know you work from home then it may be something they’re fine with, but I think it’s the home insurance you have to check the small print on, rather than business.

Personally if someone local wants to pick up from me then I just meet them somewhere like a local coffee shop instead, it feels safer and my house is a mess, so it’s probably best they don’t see it anyway :sweat_smile: Which is fine when they know what they want and are just collecting something, but I understand doesn’t work so well if they want to browse your items before deciding which they’d like.

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Thank you @konyskiw for you advice, I will have a look at the home insurance but it wouldn’t be practical to meet customers, we live in a small village, without driving (which I don’t at the moment) it wouldn’t be possible to meet them anywhere and they do like to view what else is on offer even if they are collecting. The majority are well known to me and I can imagine if I suddenly told them they could no longer pop round I would lose most of them. I will have to contact the insurance company to double check but it it does mean if I can no longer do it I would rather close as the traffic I get from Folksy certainly wouldn’t make it worth continuing which would be a shame, my business is making next to nothing at the moment so I definately won’t be adding to my outgoings.
Thank you I do understand now about the home insurance, sorry Joy @JOYSofGLASS I missed the point completely :slight_smile:x

If the people who come to see you are well known that must surely not count the same as customers coming knocking on your door. I have a few friends who pop in when they need an emergency gift as they know I always have something and the plumber chose a few things last time he was here :).
I don’t count them in the same category …not as if I was advertising for people to come to my home address shop so I’m sure you are ok doing what you are doing.

Thank you Joy …95% of the time it is by appt i.e tel call or FB message, also 95% are known to me, local customers are those from ours and surrounding villages that I either know or know of. I do have ladies as far as Whitby and York that like to come and pick up to say hello that I originally got to know via FB and we had mutual friends. I have never felt threatened or nervous of anyone coming into my home for Bearlescent. It is rarely that anyone has just knocked on my door as I dont advertise that they can and never strangers anyway.
I looked again tonight online and read when working from home it is recommended you have public liability especially if you have visitors to your home…it does look as though my business insurance covers me, however I might just double check anyway for peace of mind…when I registered with HMRC the man was really helpful and he said to take out product liability and public if I thought necessary or if I was going to do craft fairs, I did both…he didn’t advice I needed anything else though.
Thank you to all of you, it’s definately worth double checking :blush::slight_smile:

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When we did our insurance through the bank, they already knew I had a business as they have the account. I asked about people coming in that I knew and they said not a problem as we are all entitled to have friends visit. Plus said the occasional open day was not a problem as noted that my PLI covered for that.

The same I rang the council about an open day and they said providing not regular everyone could have a party.

It does depend on the insurers but they must know in this day and age loads of people work from home. We know by the collection couriers UPS etc that come round about 4.30 collecting parcels etc.

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@Caroleecrafts I’m sure there is a place to tick to keep address private on there. I am on google business and when I look it up, it says “no business location customers can visit”. I also did this on Bing as well.

Thank you Claire found it yesterday,